issue: 283 | 26 November 2018

Africa

Proparco to invest USD57.1-million in African tech startups by 2019

Following the French president Emmanuel Macron's announcement of the launch of a EUR65-million fund to finance African startups, Proparco indicated that a first tranche would be provided by 2019. This tranche of USD57.1-million will be invested in the tech ecosystem on the continent. Siby Diabira, director of Proparco’s regional bureau in Southern Africa and the Indian Ocean, revealed that this fund would be indirectly invested in two or three funds targeting Africa and directly in tech companies in the continent. Proparco will provide up to EUR1-million to tech startups seeking financing and between EUR5-million to EUR10-million in investment funds. For the time being, there are no indications of the countries or sectors which will benefit from the opportunity but, Siby Diabira indicated that Proparco was looking for  "startups which will change the lives of many people”.  

Source: Ecofin Agency

Africa

SEACOM acquires 100% of FibreCo Telecommunications to expand its African footprint
Telecommunications service provider, SEACOM has acquired 100% of FibreCo Telecommunications in a move to achieve its vision to expand its African footprint through the consolidation of fibre assets particularly as the market moves into the 5G environment with its requirement for pervasive fibre networks. SEACOM connects South Africa to the east coast of Africa, India and Europe and FibreCo connects over 60 points of presence across South Africa. FibreCo’s network also connects the SEACOM subsea cable system (which lands in Mtunzini on the east coast of South Africa) to the WACS cable (which lands at Yzerfontein, on the west coast of South Africa), enabling fully redundant high-speed ring protection for diversity around the African continent. The FibreCo acquisition significantly strengthens SEACOM’s operations in South Africaby creating a platform for the expansion of its business services.

Source: Africa Business Communities

Cameroon

European Investment Bank commits USD50-million to support Nachtigal hydropower plant
The European Investment Bank (EIB) has announced its strong support for the construction of a 420MW hydropower project in Cameroon. The EIB will provide a EUR50-million long term project finance loan to NHPC (Nachtigal Hydro Power Company) under the Impact Financing Envelope of the ACP Cotonou Investment Facility. EIB is very proud to finance the largest hydropower project ever built in Africa under a project finance structure. This project will significantly increase Cameroon’s electricity capacity through clean, low-cost energy while transforming the daily life of millions of people declared the EIB Vice-President Ambroise Fayolle. It will be focused on the construction of a 420MW hydropower project on the Sanaga river near the Nachtigal Falls, located 65km to the north-east of Yaoundé, as well as the operation of this facility for a period of 35 years.

Source: African Business Communities

Cameroon

IFC, Atlantic Financial Group in USD1.6-million deal to expand digital financial services in Cameroon

Global development institution, International Finance Corporation, IFC has announced an agreement to a value of USD1.6-million with Atlantic Financial Group Central and East Africa (AFG C&EA) to expand access to digital financial services for low-income people, small-scale entrepreneurs, and rural populations in Cameroon. The financial inclusion rate in Cameroon has nearly trebled to 35% in 2017 from 12% in 2014 but remains below the regional average. Despite recent progress, most Cameroonians still lack access to regulated financial services such as savings, loans and insurance, which could help them manage their daily financial lives and invest for the future.

Source: Africa Business Communities

East Africa

Regional cooperation in East Africa set to tackle energy insecurity
The Energy Security Policy Framework launched in Kigali, Rwanda by the East African Community in partnership with the UN Economic Commission for Africa, ECA will help East African countries to tackle the increasing energy insecurity affecting the region. “Deforestation, rising wood and charcoal prices, increasing imports of oil and gas are some of the symptoms of energy insecurity we face in East Africa. This framework will facilitate regional collaboration to collectively improve energy security.” , said Andrew Mold, Acting Director of the ECA in East Africa. ECA studies show that the lack of secure electricity supply undermines the pace of growth by 2% up to 5% of GDP. Due to over reliance on fossil fuels and a lack of refining capacity, petroleum imports amount to as much as 10% of GDP in East African countries.

Source: Africa Business Communities

Ethiopia

AfDB gives Ethiopia USD123-million grant to help ease poverty
The African Development Bank has approved a USD123-million grant to Ethiopia to help people access basic services. The money is expected to ensure people living in rural areas get access to services, such as healthcare, education, water and sanitation. It is also aimed at helping local authorities strengthen accountability and transparency in service delivery, the bank said. Ethiopia has an ambition to achieve lower middle-income status by 2025 but is hindered by some significant regional inequities and many people are living in poverty. In some parts of the country, people have very little access to services. “The measures will also benefit especially those in the underserved regions and pastoralist communities of Afar, Ethiopia-Somali, Benishangul-Gumuz and Gambela,” it said.

Source: Public Finance International

Ethiopia

Ethiopia invests USD7-billion in infrastructure and power projects

Ethiopia is to invest USD7-billion in new infrastructure and power supply projects, amid plans by the country’s central government to boost economic growth and investment. Dr Teshome Tafase, director general of Ethiopia’s Public Private Partnership Office, said the investment will include three road and 13 power projects to be launched this fiscal year, after the tendering processes have been completed, according to the Ethiopia Embassy UK. The three projects in the transportation sector are all understood to be expressways. They include a 125km road from Adama to Awash, a 72km continuation from Awash to Maeso, and a 160km road that will run from Maeso to Dire Dawa. Construction is expected to commerce this year, with the tender for the projects to be announced soon. 

Source: Just Style

Gambia

The Gambia intends to build transmission infrastructure
The Republic of The Gambia has received funds for the design and build of transmission infrastructure between Brikama and Kotu.The National Water and Electricity Company Limited (NAWEC) intends to initially select not more than six applicants for the contract for transmission infrastructure including, but not limited to 30km of 225kV transmission lines, 225 / 33kV primary substations (including refurbishment/upgrades of nine existing secondary MV substations), and control system (including SCADA system and dispatching center) in the Great Banjul Area.

Source: ESI Africa

Kenya

ERC introduces framework to open up energy market

The Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) seeks to establish a fund to cushion operators of mini-grids from high costs as part of regulations to encourage investors to generate, transmit and sell electricity in remote areas at affordable retail prices. According to the Daily Nation, ERC director general Pavel Oimeke said the establishment of a fund would ensure uniform electricity tariffs for mini-grids across the country based on fair return on investment. Oimeke underlined that varying additional costs due to factors such as location will be shouldered by the proposed fund. “The cost of a tariff for a mini-grid is quite high because you are doing generation, distribution and billing,” he said. ERC currently requires firms to have a permit to operate a power plant and a tariff approval to sell electricity under sections 27 (2) and 45 of the Energy Act 2006.

Source: ESI Africa

Kenya

BRCK and Clear Blue Technologies partner to serve the next billion internet users
Global technology company Clear Blue Technologies International Inc. has been selected as the power service provider for BRCK, a Kenyan technology provider working to connect frontier markets to the internet. Clear Blue will provide BRCK with its Smart Off-Grid technology and service for a multi-year rollout of thousands of WiFi hotspots across Africa, set to begin in 2019 and running through 2024. The alliance with BRCK adds to a wide variety of similar strategic partnerships with innovative, visionary organisations and investors. BRCK’s investors include renowned entrepreneurs Jim Sorensen and Steve Case. It was recently named as one of Time magazine’s 50 Genius Companies. Both BRCK and Clear Blue are also part of the Telecom Infra Project, founded by Facebook, Intel, Nokia, SK Telecom, and Deutsche Telekom.

Source: African Business Communities

Malawi

IMF approves new tranche of USD15.4-million for Malawi

Malawi will be provided a new tranche of USD15.4-million by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), a release published by the institution informed. As part of a USD108.2-million extended credit facility granted to the country in April 2018, the new tranche should help Malawi continue the macroeconomic stabilisation as well as stronger, more inclusive and more resilient growth reforms. "Malawi’s program performance has been satisfactory. Program-supported structural reforms advanced and most performance criteria were met, with significant over performance in international reserves and reduction in the Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM) holdings of government securities", said M. Tao Zhang, IMF’s deputy managing director. the new tranche included, the volume of fundings provided to Malawi in the framework of the extended credit facility is USD30.9-million.

Source: Ecofin Agency

Mali

African Gold Group announces USD1-million private placement to develop Mali project
Exploration and development company African Gold Group intends to complete a best efforts non-brokered private placement financing of up to USD20-million units at a price of USD0.05 per Unit for gross proceeds of up to USD1-million. Each Unit will consist of one common share of the Company and one common share purchase warrant, entitling the holder to acquire one additional common share of the Company at an exercise price of USD0.05 for a period of 24 months from issuance. Closing of the Offering is expected to occur on or about December 31, 2018. All securities issued in connection with the Offering will be subject to a statutory hold period of four-months and one day.

Source: Africa Business Communities

Nigeria

Nigeria signs USD60-million new country programme with UNIDO
Nigeria has been receiving support from various investors as the west African country seeks to make strides to economic recovery. The federal government and UNIDO recently signed a USD60-million new country programme for the country to cover industrial governance, research and statistics, and Micro Small and Medium Enterprises development programmes. According to News Agency of Nigeria, the programme is part of Nigerian efforts to accelerate the country’s industrialisation process through the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan. Okechukwu Enelamah, the Minister, Industry, Trade and Investment signed on behalf of the Federal Government, while Li Yong, the Director-General, UNIDO signed for his organisation. Media cited Enelamah stating that UNIDO was encouraged by the success of the first country programme, which paved way for the new programmes.

Source: ESI Africa

Nigeria

USADF partners with Nigeria to support local agribusiness

The President and CEO of U.S. African Development Foundation (USADF) and the Governor of Kebbi State, Nigeria signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) announcing their intention to develop and expand local agricultural enterprises in the northern Nigerian state. USADF and Kebbi State Government have entered into a five-year, USD10-million agreement, with Kebbi State and USADF each contributing USD5-million over the five years to provide seed capital and technical assistance to local agribusinesses. USADF, the U.S. Government’s African enterprise development agency, is uniquely positioned to leverage funds from African governments and directly invest these funds into community enterprises. USADF will provide USD1-million a year in seed capital funding as well as technical assistance and oversight through their local partner, Diamond Development Initiative (DDI).

Source: Africa Business Communities

Sudan

Air transport lines between Istabbul-Khartoum- Port Sudan for boosting trade and tourism movement
Sudan and Turkey have agreed on holding the meeting of their joint higher ministerial committee in Ankara next December besides speeding up opening of a Turkish bank in Khartoum for developing the commercial relations between the two countries and raising the volume of trade exchange between them from USD500-million to USD10-billion. The visiting Turkish Vice President, Dr. Fuat Oktay, affirmed following talks he held with Prime Minister Mutaz Musa that the two sides agreed on development of trade between the two countries and speeding up investments by the Turkish Mineral Company in Sudan and opening air lines between Istanbul-Khartoum-Port Sudan for increasing trade and tourism movement. The Turkish Vice President commended the efforts of Sudan for realising peace in South Sudan besides expulsion by Sudan to the terrorist Gulen organisation from its territories, affirming support of Ankara to the efforts of peace in the area. 

Source: Sudan Commerce News

Tanzania

New Chinese Bank Opens Door in Dar es Salaam
A new commercial bank formed by China's state owned and private enterprises open doors in Dar es Salaam to tap into growing Chinese trade and investment in Tanzania and boost use of Chinese currency, Yuan. China Dasheng Bank Limited, a fully-fledged commercial bank will become the newest entrant in the Tanzania's banking sector and targets to support China funded projects in Tanzania and provide credit for individuals and enterprises doing business with China, according to the Board Chairman Ji Jiaqin. He told reporters in Dar es Salaam that with initial capital of USD40-million, the bank would also establish RMB clearing and settlement centre with a focus on the East African region to enable clients to trade directly in Renminbi, the official currency of China.

Source: Africa Business Communities

Tanzania

Zanzibar, UAE ink production sharing agreement
Zanzibar has signed a production sharing agreement with a United Arab Emirates company for the exploration of natural gas in the Zanzibar block. According to The East African, the targeted Zanzibar block has already undergone several field activities including pre-drilling aerial exploration and deployment of offshore infrastructure for drilling of test wells. Former holders of exploration rights for the Zanzibar block - Antrim Energy of Canada - describes project owners RAK Gas LLC as “the state natural gas utility of the Emirate of Ras al Khaimah in the United Arab Emirates which has interests in two offshore blocks in Ras al Khaimah as well as holding interests in exploration blocks in East Africa and Egypt, including the East Pande block in Tanzania.” Antrim added: “The Pemba-Zanzibar block has a proven hydrocarbon system, as evidenced by the Tundaua oil seep on Pemba Island and oil shows in previous exploration wells. 

Source: ESI Africa

Tanzania

Preparations underway for Rufiji hydropower plant
The project execution committee chairman, Juma Idd declared that preparations for the proposed 2,100MW Rufiji hydropower plant at Stiegler's Gorge are well underway in order for construction works to commence. Idd was informing energy minister, Medard Kaleman, in Dodoma, on the progress made thus far, reports Daily News. “Other preparatory works include setting up of electricity power cooling stations at Pangawe and Dakawa and supply of water to the construction sites,” he said. Minister Kalemani urged the committee to ensure the remaining work is timely completed to enable the project contractor to begin the work. The Rufiji hydropower project is planned on Rufiji River in Stielger's Gorge, Selous Game Reserve of Tanzania. With a gross output of 5,920GWh, the plant envisaged to double the country's total generation capacity, upon commissioning.

Source: ESI Africa

Tanzania/Burundi

African Development Bank approves USD322-million for road upgrading project in Burundi and Tanzania
The Boards of Directors of the African Development Bank Group have approved USD322.35-million loans and grant to Burundi and Tanzania to finance the Rumonge-Gitaza (45km) and Kabingo-Kasulu-Manyovu (260km) road upgrading project. The project aims at strengthening regional integration and trade in the East African Community, particularly between Tanzania and Burundi through improved cross-border transport and is part of the East African roads network  linking the Port of Dar es Salaam to the regional markets in Tanzania, Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). To be completed in 2023, the project comprises several phases, including the upgrading from gravel to bitumen standard of Kabingo-Kasulu-Manyovu (260km) road section in Tanzania and rehabilitation of Rumonge – Gitaza (45km) paved road section in Burundi.

Source: Ecofin Agency

Uganda

US firm to invest Sh186-billion in East African data centres
First Brick Holdings, a Roha Group company has announced plans for multiple investments to boost the digitalisation of East and Southern Africa with the funding and development of several data centres across the region. AfricaCom is an African tech and telecoms event which brings together the converging industries and innovations shaping Africa's digital future. Robert Mullins, the Executive Director at First Brick Holdings said the planned USD50-million data centres by 2022, will open up new opportunities for financial services, governments and small to medium enterprises (SMEs) by addressing their mission-critical needs for data storage. He added that the centres will also improve business continuity and disaster recovery and create a network of data centres able to accommodate international and regional customers in state-of-the-art facilities “Economic growth in East Africa is averaging between 5-10% across the region.

Source: New Vision

Zambia

NASCU and Mastercard announce landmark agreement to drive financial inclusion in Zambia

The National Association of Savings and Credit Unions (NASCU), the apex organisation for all financial cooperatives in Zambia, and global payments technology company, announced a landmark agreement on financial integration by means of formal financial products and services to underserved members of cooperatives. Under this agreement, NASCU will introduce a secure, efficient and transparent electronic payment system to streamline and automate payments including payroll, loans and disbursements to its savings and credit cooperative members. It will also issue 1.5 million MasterCard contactless debit card payments to its members over the next five years, providing them with a convenient and convenient payment for everyday commerce activities. The initiative aligns with Zambia's National Financial Inclusion Strategy 2017 to 2022 - which aims to increase financial inclusion from 59% to 80%.

Source: African Business Brief



No information provided herein may in any way be construed as legal advice from ENSafrica and/or any of its personnel. Professional advice must be sought from ENSafrica before any action is taken based on the information provided herein, and consent must be obtained from ENSafrica before the information provided herein is reproduced in any way. ENSafrica disclaims any responsibility for positions taken without due consultation and/or information reproduced without due consent, and no person shall have any claim of any nature whatsoever arising out of, or in connection with, the information provided herein against ENSafrica and/or any of its personnel. Any values, such as currency (and their indicators), and/or dates provided herein are indicative and for information purposes only, and ENSafrica does not warrant the correctness, completeness or accuracy of the information provided herein in any way.

 

feedback

Please fill in the form below to send us any queries, requests, feedback, suggestions - we'd love to hear from you:
 *
 *
 *
 *
 

 

latest news

Africa Business in Brief
18 Dec 2018
Africa Business in Brief Issue: 286

agribusiness ENSight
12 Dec 2018
Easing of water restrictions in the Western Cape

Africa Business in Brief
10 Dec 2018
Africa Business in Brief Issue: 285

Africa regulatory ENSight
06 Dec 2018
Africa regulatory ENSight - issue 11 of 2018

IP ENSight
05 Dec 2018
Trade marks: not just for businesses

click for all articles

 

our awards

African Legal Awards Chambers and Partners Rankings DealMakers Awards Global Competition Review 100 (GCR100) Rankings IAM Patent 1000 Rankings IFLR1000 Rankings International Tax Review (ITR) Rankings Legal 500 Rankings Managing Intellectual Property (MIP) Rankings World Trademark Review 1000 (WTR 1000) Rankings
info@ENSafrica.com | level 2 BBBEE rating (South Africa)